Latvia is a small country. And this is just the fourth year that a festival of such international significance takes place in Riga. We need new and young people to fall in love with the beautiful world of cinema! This is an honest answer as to why it is so important to have a whole weekend dedicated to films for the whole family, why it is important to provide additional captivating pastimes as well… Two fascinating days of a cinematic adventure for schoolchildren, pre-school kids and their kin.

A film about a lonely woman with a yarn-ball in her belly.

Boring jobs and existential anxiety. The apocalypse is a tempting liberator.

After a chance meeting with a girl, a nameless boy becomes her lover and guardian angel. Together they avenge the girl’s rape, fleeing into the woods in an attempt to escape the modern world and civilization. They commit more crimes, killing encountered people at random, until the third character comes into the story, changing the dynamic of the lovers’ relationship. It’s an emotional story of passion, violence and the impossibility of running away from oneself. The previous feature film by Alexander Vartanov has been called a nightmarish Russian take on Truffaut’s The 400 Blows (1959). This film resembles a tragedy that took place in Russia near Pskov when the Blueberry Fields was completed already.

Eskil Vogt’s feature debut stars Ellen Dorrit Petersen as Ingrid, who has recently lost her sight. She retreats to the safety of her home, alone with her husband and her thoughts, but her deepest fears and repressed fantasies soon take over. Ingrid no longer cares about what is real if she can manage to visualize it. The director hopes that the story will tell a lot of different things about human beings, especially about their inner selves – all the strange, shameful, imaginative thoughts we all have, but which we often have a hard time sharing with others. Vogt and his team have a visual language that exists somewhere between reality and dream. This film just refuses to fade away in memory.

Sculptor Constantin Brancusi’s Princess X – a futuristic bronze phallus instead of a bust of Napoleon’s relative, Marie Bonaparte.

Newlyweds go on a honeymoon to Hungary. Thanks to a man they meet on the train Budapest-Visegrad they end up in a darkly poetic yet creepy castle where it turns out that their traveling companion has an old score to settle with the master of the house… Life and death is but a game for those whose souls have been slain by the self-destruction of Europe. Two legendary stars of the early horror movies – Bela Lugosi (Dracula, 1931) and Boris Karloff (Frankenstein, 1931) – meet for the first time in this film. Director Edgar G. Ulmer, an artist and aficionado of classical music, has created a visually elegant horror story, interwoven with satanic sadism, finding inspiration in the works by Edgar Allan Poe and occultist Aleister Crowley.

The director wanted the black-and-white yakuza movie to be as entertaining as possible and made a surreal stew consisting of the following ingredients: contract killers, erotic attraction, macho rivalry, fetish for the smell of boiling rice, an appearance of a butterfly at the wrong time, obsession with death… The film quickly developed a serious cult status even though Nikkatsu Studio had short-sightedly considered it to be the last drop in the sea of films without any sense or box office potential, therefore the defiant director was fired. Suzuki dared to sue the studio and was blacklisted for many years.

This film belongs to Lithuanian cinema classics. The classmates of nine-year-old Inga call her “Beauty Queen”. Their attitude changes as soon as one boy states that she is actually ugly. The children are not aware of how deeply they hurt her. However, just a couple of kind words would be enough to make the situation better.